This blog post is a long time coming. If you look at the dates, you’ll see it’s been over 2 years since I last posted and a lot has happened and changed for me in those 2 1/2 years.
I’m no longer a massage therapist
A fall that injured a shoulder and a lot of other old injuries added up. I was massaging less and less. It was becoming more expensive to keep my office open than was profitable.
I am a full time web designer
I’ve been designing websites since about 1997, mostly for my former corporate job. I ended up doing more and more of them for massage therapists who needed websites for their practice. After a while, I was doing more web design than massage. Which totally suits me fine because I love web design. It appeals to the geek in me.
My web design business has grown and changed
I started off in the entry level web design market. $500 websites. In theory, they should be quick and easy (for me) to do and I could make enough revenue to pay my bills and live indoors. But the customer base for that market seems to expect fully custom websites for $500 and I just couldn’t make it work, financially. By the way, a semi-custom website price will start at $5,ooo and tops out at several hundred thousand.
I’ve also taught blogging for business with my friend Dawn Barclay. We hosted several blog challenges and got a lot of folks started in blogging. Those who have stuck with it have found that it has helped them get clients they want. A few have even started writing for industry magazines. Note: this has been a good thing and I plan to start up again.
I’ve also taught business owners how to write their own website copy. A Website That Works has helped a lot of small business owners get beyond the “Welcome to my website” boilerplate crap and build a website and content strategy that helps them attract the right clients/customers and make a living. Note: this has been a good thing and I plan to offer the course again very soon.
I speak at WordCamp almost every year.
Speaking at WordCamp is one of the highlights of my year. I get to share what I’ve learned with a room full of people who want to learn. I get to meet some incredibly smart and generous people and learn from them. I sat on a panel last year with 3 people that I admire. I felt like an imposter sitting up there with them, but they are lovely, gracious folks and I had a great discussion with them.
I’ve consolidated and simplified
At one point, I had 7 plates in the air
- Web Design
- Teaching live CEs
- Teaching online CEs
- Teaching at the massage school
- Running blogging challenges
- Running online courses
What I discovered is that you simply cannot promote and grow 3 very different businesses at the same time. At least not successfully. Even Gary V doesn’t have that much energy. So, I made some decisions. The first to go was teaching at the massage school. I was devoting about 3 hours outside of class for every hour in class and spending way too much time on someone else’s business with no value added to my business.
The next to go was teaching live CEs. Finding venues was a pain and after a venue double booked over one of my reservations, not the first time I had a snafu with a venue, I decided I had had enough. I wasn’t going to continue managing chaos while trying not to make my students angry over date and venue changes.
After that, I closed my massage practice and finally shut down my online ethics course this year. I haven’t run a blogging challenge or online course for over a year.
So, now I’m down to Web Design and I’ve spent the last 18 months concentrating on it. I’ve done a lot of the hard work of reviewing my strategy, client base, the market, the industry trends, and my expanding skill set and passions. I made some decisions.
1 – I can’t afford to do $500 websites
2 – I love teaching people
3 – I love doing more complex/challenging web projects and online marketing
4 – Bigger clients need help with #3
What the future looks like and what it means for you
This will be the last blog post on Massage Therapy World.
It’s been wicked fun and I’ve met some amazing people over the last 7 years. It seems fitting that I should shut it down on the anniversary of the blog. My first post went live in May of 2010. The last will be May of 2017.
I’ll leave this up for a couple of weeks while I sift through the archives. I’ll be taking some of my best business and website posts and rewriting them and republishing them at Pint Sized Sites. If there are any that are specific to massage therapy, I’ll see if I can find another place to guest post, like I have at Massage Business Blueprint.
My web design business is now pretty focused on helping nonprofits with their web presence and online marketing. I’m a proud bleeding heart liberal and helping organizations that help people makes me happy. Helping people is why I got into massage and teaching, so this is just the next step in that process. If you’ve got a decent sized nonprofit that whose website is ready for a level up, you’ll find me at kattero.
And Pint Sized Sites? Well, she’s getting a makeover. And, yes, I think of that website as a she. Kind of like a ship, ya know? Pint Sized Sites will still be focused on helping new and very small businesses with their websites, but with a change in method. Instead of doing it for you, I’ll be teaching you to do it yourself.
When I started Pint Sized and Massage Therapy World, your choice for DIY websites was using the crap site builder offered by your webhost or overpaying someone like Intuit for a crap website. Now, there are some really fabulous solutions out there that do a lot of the technical heavy lifting and will help you build a terrific website. With some knowledge of content creation, blogging, and simple SEO, you can create a website that works for your little business. So, Pint Sized Sites will be the place for how-to articles, in depth reviews of tools, and online courses to teach you to do it yourself.
Finally, you’ll still see me teaching at WordCamps across the US. I’ll be applying to speak at a few scattered across the country. If I come to your town, I’d love to see you at WordCamp and we can share a cup of coffee or a glass of iced tea.
And that’s my future. Helping folks with websites and teaching. In a couple of weeks, this site will automagically redirect to Pint Sized Sites. If that’s not your thing, then I want to take this opportunity to say:
Thank You for sharing this journey with me!
It has been my privilege and pleasure to write for you, meet so many of you online and in person.
If you come along to Pint Sized Sites to learn more about websites for your massage practice (or spa or clinic or CE business), then I look forward to working with you on your success.